My Most Famous (Fabricated) Quotations
I’ve decided to record some of my most famous quotations just in case you have never heard them. The first:
The question is not is there life after death but is there life after birth.
Over the years, I have thought that the lower caste in India, and the impoverished people everywhere, have little to live for. Who wants to live in squalor where sewage runs down the streets?
Actually, they do have something to live for. They don’t just sit on their haunches and die. They have children and the children learn to survive. The driving force for all critters is survival, not just the short-term survival of those living, but the survival of those who will live in the future. It’s all about preserving DNA.
But there is more than that. Some folks are able to overcome a bad situation and rise above the rest. That is what parents in desperate situations want for their children.
From this point on, I will make up my great quotations as we move along.
Civilized people are amazingly adept at wasting time.
We are very clever at creating devices that save time, reduce our workload and give us time to create devices that waste our time. Almost everyone in the world is on the Internet and we set on our haunches and surf the net for hours at a time.
If you find that television can be a horrible waste of time, then what about the cell phone, the greatest time waster in all history?
The cell phone combined with the Internet may be the peak of time wasting activity, but don’t bet on it. At this very moment, industrialist are garnering up all their forces to develop products that will make your life a complete waste! (I put that in italics because, who knows, it could be a great quote of mine.)
The cell phone is a good way to check whether or not your kid is in church or in a bar or hanging out with those bad folks. It will also turn your brain into mush.
That was an amazing quote, right?
Let’s try another:
We enjoy pretending what we are not to avoid being what we are.
We tend to overlook the fact that we are just as important to society as a big-brained scientist, a valedictorian, a major league pitcher who can throw one hundred and 3 miles an hour, a writer of thick novels, a skilled craftsman and one who can paint pretty pictures. We are just important in different ways. If a man works all day shoveling manure but he’s using his hard-earned money to care for his family, then he is very important to them. He can always put on nice clothing and go to church with them on Sunday and nobody will know that he shovels cow poop. (I could quote a little bitty we said when we were kids about how nobody knows what’s in our underwear, but in propriety, I skipped it.)
Why do we dress like the athletics at sporting events? To become them!
Here’s another one of my great fabricated quotes:
We are too often blind to opportunity. While opportunity is right under our feet, we sometimes avoid it lest it dirty our shoes, it disappears into the earth.
Here’s a story, more or less as I remember, aired at church years ago from a young women I know who was speaking:
A camel driver in the Sahara spotted an old man in the sand who was dying of thirst. He stayed with the old man overnight helping him to recover. He gave the old man a camel and food and water to finish his journey home.
As a camel driver was about to leave on his journey, the old man opened a cloth bag in front of him and tell told him to take a big hands full of what looked like pebbles to the camel driver. He thought the old man was crazy from the sun and he only took a few pebbles.
As a camel driver was moving along he thought about the old man in the pebbles. He decided to take a look at them again. When he did he saw that they were rubies.
The camel driver was glad that he had taken a few pebbles, but he was very unhappy that he had taken so few.
Sometimes we see opportunities that we can’t take, or at least we think that we cannot take. Some years ago (1966) we moved to Ames, Iowa. I immediately saw that there was no McDonald’s. I didn’t have a penny in my pocket that I can put towards such an investment. It looked like an impossible to me, and I simply let it pass.
Few years later, my neighbor built a McDonald’s. He was not a rich man but he took his opportunity to the bank where he was given enough money to start a McDonald’s.
I in turn, decided that an engineering professor’s salary was too low for me to send all of my children through college and missions for our church so I took a higher paying job in industry and left Iowa State University. If I were the one who had started the McDonald’s, money would not of been a problem.
When I was a young lad, my friend, Paul, told me to grab my red wagon and we took off west on Highway, 40 picking up bottles and putting them in the wagon. We then took the bottles to the grocery store and collected the deposits.
To my surprise, we did not go back to the highway to gather more bottles. Instead went to the junkyard across the tracks and purchased bottles which we took back to the grocery and earned a penny or two on each bottle.
We did this until Kenneth Horsley, the grocer, said “No more bottles!”
Paul saw this opportunity and he took it, but that is not my point. When we were out in the Sagebrush walking along Highway 40, I could see all the vacant land that someday would simply be an extension of the growing Salt Lake City. I wanted to buy that the land and hold it.
A couple of years later, when I saw a brokerage office in Salt Lake City, and was told what it was, I wished I could buy General Electric stock and hold it.
Both of these dreams were beyond me. I was thinking of things that I could do if I already had of which I had little or none. (I later bought GE more than once, but unlike my wise son who keeps valuable stocks, I sold it.)
I was born in 1932, the worst year of the Great Depression. My dad, a hard-working rancher kid who had moved to the city, was out of work for two years. With 9 mouths to feed, the most important thing to him was finding a job and keeping it. My father admired anyone in the professions such as engineers and doctors, and such, who kept working through the depression. My father had less opportunity because he was an accountant and there was no money to count.
My older brother became an attorney, I became an engineer, and my younger brother became an accountant which moved him on to successful business ownership. So as far as my father was concerned, his objectives were reached through his sons. (Isn’t that true of all of us. Let’s invent another great quotation: Our visions are fulfilled by our children.)
There is the temptation to go on here and say many other things about missed opportunities and how what seem to be impossible opportunities can come to pass. Suffice it to say, sometimes opportunities are missed because we think that they are impossible to us, although they are not. (Sometimes great quotation just pop up.)
One more and then I’ll shut up:
For some people impediments to progress are simply the stepping stones to success.
I dreamed this one up because of the young divorced women with four children who was stricken with a horribly the debilitating disease. I met her after my retirement in Arizona where I was voluntarily helping to build her home through Habitat for Humanity.
She was mainly confined to a wheelchair, yet with her children and her ex-husband she made sure that her share of the work was completed.
I also worked for the museum in Payson Arizona as a volunteer and I fished in the lake near the museum. I would see this beautiful young woman bent over those crutches that fit under your arm and forced herself to walk around the lake. I can always see her in unbearable pain, but more than that, I could see her unrelenting determination.
You do remember Helen Keller, don’t you?
Anne Sullivan took this poor blind and deaf child and helped her to become a person of noted accomplishment. Ann Sullivan of course deserves much of the credit but the bottom line is that the noble spirit who could not see or hear or speak was determined to overcome her disabilities.
Such noble people! Now that makes me want to create one more famous quote by me, Taylor Jones, the hack writer:
Nobility is not measured by wealth and title. It is measured by the true respect and honor given to a benevolent individual who, despite disabilities and restrictions, continually loves and serves mankind.
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